Anyone Seen Becky Thatcher?

Well, folks, we’re gearing up for the trip to Burlington. It’s time to get on up to The Second Annual Snake Alley Festival of Film.

It starts in just two and a half days. It looks like it’ll be a sell-out. Get on the phone or on-line to make sure you don’t get shut out. This is one of the “must-attend” film festivals. Heck! The after parties alone are worth the price of a ticket. Last year, the entertainment (band) and the parties kept moving after the bars closed.

We’ll be there (at least for some of the partying) but first we’ve got to make a stop along the way in Hannibal, Missouri. I’ve got to see a guy about painting a fence.

Then it’s a short hop to B-town. And let the festivities begin.
If you need tickets, call Tina Salamone at (319) 237-1099. She’s the gal who runs the show at the Capitol Theater.

She tolerates Lonnie, so she must be an alright lady.
See you at show time. And we’ll TRY to keep you updated as the festivities unwind.

On The Road Again!

On the trail to Burlington

This time next week, I’ll be on the way to The 2nd Annual Snake Alley Festival of Film in Burlington, Iowa. I’m looking forward to renewing friendships I made last year at the fest…and beginning some new ones.

There is an exciting line-up of films this year from all over the world, plus an added category for screen writers. (As a copywriter and blogger, I’m particularly interested in this one.)

The line-up is posted in the last blog post where you can decide which (if not all) of the films you plan to see. Remember to stop by the lobby afterward to vote for your favorite. (This is for the coveted “People’s Choice” award.)

We’ll be leaving sunny Florida for Burlington soon. Hopefully the Chamber of Commerce remembers to hit the “good tourist weather” button before we get there. (Actually, this is the perfect time of year to go to Burlington.)

If you haven’t already gotten your tickets, (what’re you waiting for???) here is the info you need:
Online, tickets available 24/7 at http://www.redtrucktickets.com
By phone, call 319-237-1099.
In person, at the Capitol Theater 211 N. 3rd Street.
Ticket Office hours 2-5pm Monday-Saturday and 2 hours before each event start time.

TINA SALAMONE
Executive Director
Burlington Capitol Theater
211 N. 3rd Street
Burlington, Iowa
319-237-1099
http://www.burlingtoncapitoltheater.org

On a side note, I want to congratulate Tina Salamone for putting up with my son (Lonnie Schuyler) during the run-up to the fest. (I can guarantee that this was no mean feat.) ;>)

My daughter-in-law asked me if Lonnie told us to bring our swim suits. Is he planning on drowning me so I can’t embarrass him?

What!?! You Don’t “Like” Us?

Official Selection

Do you see that Logo right above this post? When your entry is selected to be in The Snake Alley Festival of Film, you get to use that logo. All of the entrants will be using it. They’ll put it on their websites, their marketing materials, and on their posters. Heck! They might even have it tattooed on their posteriors! (But we don’t encourage that sort of thing.)

So, you may ask, what’s that got to do with “liking” us? Well, Sunshine, if you go to The Snake Alley Festival of Film’s Facebook page and “Like” us or “Like” our page, you’ll start getting previews of all the cool flicks that will be shown this year. Those are the “official selections,” hence the logo.

Surely you remember the “un-punctuated” list of official selections.
See—if you get all of the previews by “Liking” The Snake Alley Festival of Film’s Facebook page—you’ll know where the punctuation is supposed to go.

Plus, you’ll get glimpses into some amazing talent. It’s like an appetizer before the feast.

The Facebook page where you can “Like” us is here: https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Snake-Alley-Festival-of-Film/252499188099817?fref=ts

If you want to join the group, go here: https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/161901397214186/?fref=ts

This just in on May 7th!!! Tickets are now available! Finally! Get ’em while they’re hot! Prices start at $7.00 for one block of films, $20.00 for a day pass, and $45.00 for the entire fest. And…you get to go to the after parties. So how do you get these much-sought-after tickets?
Well, you could wait until you get there and hope you don’t get shut out. Or…you can buy them on line at http://www.redtrucktickets.com , or call Tina Salamone at 319-237-1099. (She’s the big mahoff at the theater.) http://www.burlingtoncapitoltheater.org

And So…Let The Judging Begin!

One of the awards for film makers.

One of the awards for film makers.

As you may have noticed in the last unpunctuated, haphazard, post—the selection committee has made their choices known.

If yours is one of the films selected, “Congratulations!”

If your film or screenplay didn’t get chosen, know this: Some of the entries were screened three and four times. The level of talent and quality of work (including yours) was that close. Please continue to produce the quality of work that we had the privilege to watch.

And please attend The Snake Alley Festival of Film and support your fellow film makers. Last year, we saw some wonderful friendships develop and watched some great collaborations begin.

As to the list that was published last week: If your film was there, I’m sure you were able to pick it out of the word jumble. If not…and you’re trying to figure out the titles…Good Luck! It seems that someone was so excited that he forgot to use punctuation. I won’t mention any names (Lonnie) but hopefully, it will get updated soon.

And if you think the selection committees had a tough job—just imagine what the judges are going through.

On a final note…The Snake Alley Festival of Film opens in about 5 ½ weeks! Woo Hoo!

“Yes, We’ve Got Trouble”

Port of Burlington Visitor Center

Port of Burlington Visitor Center

If you’re following the news about the flooding along the Mississippi, you may have noticed that they mentioned the Quad Cities area. Burlington (home of the Snake Alley Festival of Film) is one of those four cities. (Quad means ‘four’ there, Sparky.)

Not to worry, mi amigo. The flooding here will not hamper our production. The show(s) will go on.

But, enough of that for now. It’s time to announce the answers to the Snake Alley Festival of Film trivia challenge. Check your answers to the questions in the last post to see if you’re a winner.

The name of the movie about two con-men was “The Music Man.” The actor who beat Sinatra for the lead role was Robert Preston. This movie made him an A-List Star. His con-man partner was played by comedian Buddy Hackett. The female lead was played by Shirley Jones.

“The Music Man” was written by Iowa native Meredith Wilson. He went by his middle name of Meredith, but his actual first name was Robert. He was born in Mason City, Iowa and “The Music Man” premiered there in 1962. In addition to “The Music Man” he wrote “The Unsinkable Molly Brown” and did a production for California’s Centennial and Oregon’s Centennial. He also wrote the University of Iowa’s fight song and Iowa State’s fight song.

Did you get all of the answers? Congratulations! Contact us during the Snake Alley Festival of Film and we’ll arrange for you to kiss the winning wieners. (You lucky dog!)

The party begins in only six more weeks. Just remember…tickets include invitations to the “after” parties.

Keep those cameras rolling.

I’m The Taxman

Kiss the Wiener

Kiss the Wiener

So, what does a song by The Beatles have to do with the Snake Alley Festival of Film…or even Iowa? Keep reading Sunshine. We’re getting there.

In 1962 a movie about two con men premiered in Mason City, Iowa, not too far from Burlington. One of the songs from that movie was recorded by The Beatles on their 1964 album titled “Meet The Beatles.” The name of that song was “Til There Was You.”

When they were filming the movie, Jack L. Warner (of Warner Bros.) wanted Frank Sinatra to play the lead. The writer insisted on someone else and his choice was final. The movie made the writer’s choice into an A-list Star.

So, why did I choose a song called “The Taxman” in a blog about the Snake Alley Festival of Film? Because April 15th was tax day. It was also the final deadline for entries into the film fest.

But you can still be a winner.

Guess the name of the movie, the names of the two men who played the con men (starting with the guy who beat out Sinatra), and the first name of the writer of the movie.
If you get all three correct, you’ll win a prize. Get two correct and win a prize for second place. Get one right and you get a third place prize.

The prizes? First place gets to kiss the winner of the Cyn-A-Palooza wiener dog races. Second place gets to kiss two dogs, and third place gets to…well, you get the idea.

The judges are working their eyeballs to the bone. It’s gonna be a great fest.

Busted!

Lonnie and his Dad

Lonnie and his Dad

Well, it looks like I’ve been outed! And by my own son, no less!

If you’ve been following The Snake Alley Festival of Film blog, (You ARE following the blog, right? RIGHT?) Then you’ve probably noticed that the intrepid blogster mentions various folks from time to time in the posts. These are people I met at last year’s film fest and decided to spotlight in the blog.

To a man (or woman as the case may be) they busted their humps helping make the first annual Snake Alley Festival of Film the huge success that it was. They deserve all the recognition they get. I (of my own volition) chose to honor them in my own humble, irreverent, and inimitable, style with humor, affection, and a touch of sarcasm. And…since I live 1500 miles from Burlington, down in Tampa, Florida…I can get away with a lot!

Anyway, to make a long story short, I created a fanciful tale about Lonnie and Cyn in my last blog post. It must have stirred up some dust (hee-hee-hee) because Lonnie felt the need to “out” his poor, aged father, to the world as the blogger of record.

In the picture at the beginning of this post you’ll see a picture of Lonnie and me. (I’m the pretty one on the left.)

I will be there again this year for The Second Annual Snake Alley Festival of Film…so come up and introduce yourself. I promise I won’t put you in this blog. NOT!

Signed, Lonnie’s Dad

“A Tale of Original Sin!”

Wiener Dog Races

Lonnie and Cyn

And so it came to pass that actor, writer, and director, Lonnie Schuyler did gaze upon the countenance of Iowa girl Cynthia Stiefel. And he was sorely tempted by her to leave The Garden of Weird and Evil (Hollywood) and follow her to the land of milk and honey (known locally as corn and pigs!)

Thus did they wed and began a life of business and civic endeavors in a town called Burlington in the land of Iowa.
Cynthia (or Cyn as she is now called) opened a boutique and named it Original Cyn’s. She became involved in the revitalization of Burlington’s downtown area and with the help of other merchants began an annual street festival that draws many travelers to the area and promotes the main street and downtown revival.

This festival…called Cyn-A-Palooza, is replete with games, sales, live jousting with those intrepid ferret and weasel hunters, (actually—Wiener dog races) and fun for the entire family.

Lonnie gazed upon this land and the river that runs by it and saw that it was good. He thus began to make movies utilizing the river and surrounding lands. As his movies took him to other towns and film festivals, he realized that his betrothed had led him to an ideal location for a film festival.

With visions of using the refurbished Capitol Theater and Burlington’s revitalizing downtown, he began planning a film festival to be unique among others. He sensed that using the towns major landmarks would be the key to making it stand out. With the church steeples as a backdrop and Snake Alley as a theme, The Snake Alley Festival of Film was born.

And so…with much fanfare, and to once again bestow much merriment on the town of Burlington, in the land called Iowa, the 10th Annual Cyn-A-Palooza will take place on June 8th, following the 2nd Annual Snake Alley festival of Film. (June 6-8)

Be there or thou-est will be square!

Ryan’s and Brian’s and Bears! Oh My!

Amazing Eats

Amazing Eats

Amy and Charlie Walsh

Amy and Charlie Walsh

Brian Hopkins

Brian Hopkins

Ryan Turner

Ryan Turner

With apologies to all you “Wizard of Oz” fans out there. The “three bears” we’re referring to are Ryan Turner, Brian Hopkins, and Charlie Walsh. In reality they are all lovable Teddy Bears who do a lot to promote The Snake Alley Festival of Film.

Charlie is the Vice-President of F&M Bank and Trust. They were the ones responsible for the amazing eats in the set up in the lobby of the bank and for the street party between the bank and the Capitol Theater.

Ryan Turner is the guy was the MC at the awards ceremony and at various points during the fest. We also hear that he was spotted doing the Harlem Shake at the Shottenkirk Superstore.

Brian Hopkins was the go-to guy for any and everything. When he wasn’t selling real estate he sold tickets, lined up sponsors…you name it. Brian was “the man.”

All three of these guys went above and beyond to make The Snake Alley Festival of Film a success. And you can tell by the pictures that they really enjoy their work.

Also…Charlie Walsh isn’t really that big. It’s just that his wife, Amy, (pictured with him) is only 4 feet tall! Just kidding! He IS that big. Where do you think I got the idea for “bears?”

Don’t forget the late deadline of April 1st! But…if you’ve really been foolish and can’t make it by the 1st, you can get a two-week April Fool’s extension. Just submit your entry through “Withoutabox.” It’s located “in the box” on the home page. (I’m still trying to figure this one out.)

And this…thanks to Laura Woodard of Grassroots Marketing! To get each new blog post sent to your inbox, dripping with fresh wisdom…click on the link in the lower right corner of your screen.

Ahh, Spring! It’s Number One with a Bullitt!

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Since Spring has sprung, it’s time to do some spring cleaning. In that vein, let’s “clean up” some old business. (The question I asked in the last post.) In this age of Google searches, I was surprised that no one named the actor in last post’s trivia question. He was none other than Steve McQueen.

And just to show you what “sticking with it” can get you, in 1968, just ten years after his debut in The Blob, Steve McQueen’s Solar Productions Company made the movie “Bullitt.” Bullitt was a box office smash and won an Academy Award for Best Film Editing. (See what practicing your craft can get you.) It also won an Edgar for Best Motion Picture Screenplay.

The car chase scenes (now considered an industry standard) were filmed in and around San Francisco near Lombard Street. Lombard Street is often cited as the crookedest street in the U.S., but we here in Burlington know better. Our own Snake Alley is the “Most-est Crookedest,” and we’ve got “Ripley’s Believe It or Not” to prove it.

Okay, San Fran, we’ll give you the Golden Gate. But we’ve got a bridge here that’s nothing to sneeze at. Especially when it’s lit up at night. Talk about romantic. A warm summer evening at The Drake, under a moonlit sky, with the bridge in the background, and the girl of your dreams…

Enough of that! Because…believe it or not, the deadline for late entries is rapidly approaching. So, if you want a shot at winning an “Alley,” you’d better get on the stick, slick!

(Just a side note…with much thanks to Laura Woodard! If you want the latest blog post to show up in your inbox, click on the box in the lower right-hand corner that says “follow.” Fill out the form that pops up and each new post will show up in your inbox like magic! Thanks, Laura! We’ll talk to the webmaster about making it bigger or more visible.)